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Buffy # 27 Issue Discussion Thread(Full Spoilers)

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  • Buffy # 27 Issue Discussion Thread(Full Spoilers)

    Advanced review for tomorrow's Buffy # 27.Spoilerish and some new art from isuse at link.

    Comic Review: Buffy the Vampire Slayer #27

    May 11, 2016By Nat Brehmer

    While most of the previous issue was spent trying to start setting up the finale, #27 is the first time we really feel just how close the end of the season actually is. Things are wrapping up and, like every season of this comic so far, are shaping up to the point where it’s doubtful that the status quo will be remotely similar to where it was in the beginning. That impending sense of finality—to a degree, at least—does the issue a lot of good.

    Most everything here is done very well. The first, most exciting thing is that Dawn and Xander’s dimension hopping adventure has allowed for the return of a major character that none of the canon comics have yet utilized. And her characterization is exceptional. We pick up with her as if we just saw her yesterday, which is a major testament to Christos Gage’s writing.

    The only thing that isn’t handled well in this issue is another character returning from the dead: Jonathan. This isn’t the Jonathan who Buffy talked down from a bell tower, promising the slayer he wouldn’t ever hurt anyone intentionally. Not the Jonathan who presented Buffy with the class protector award. Not the Jonathan who told Buffy how to defeat Warren and told Andrew they had to pay for their crimes in being a part of the trio, nor the Jonathan who—moments before being killed by his best friend—told him that he missed all of the people who never knew him in high school, even if they’d never think of him again in their lives. That Jonathan would never agree to becoming a vengeance demon with the sole intent of getting back everyone who picked on him.

    Which is why I actually theorize that this isn’t Jonathan, much in the way that D’Hoffryn’s Ghost Anya isn’t actually Anya. Luckily, that’s the only misstep in characterization this issue. D’Hoffryn in particular shines and I really like the angle they took of making him a major villain. He’s someone who’s been left unchecked for so long, despite all of the horrible things he has done and yet, even still, there’s an underlying sense of morality to him. He has an internal code and whatever it is, he sticks to it. That’s endearing. But it’s also cool to see someone like this, who was often played for comic relief, rise to become an actual threat. Because he’s always been evil and he’s never been dealt with. If I had to venture a guess, I’d say that Ghost Anya—even with the knowledge that she’s not the real Anya—will aid the gang in figuring out what they need to do in order to bring D’Hoffryn down.

    The character stuff between the main Scoobies is typically great. There’s a lot more fighting going on between them, but to be honest it’s kind of refreshing with how well things were going for the first half of the season. Buffy and Willow are as at odds as they’ve ever been. This wasn’t something we saw a lot on the show, but it rose organically in the comics when Buffy destroyed the seed of magic at the end of season eight. All of these quabbles between the main gang lead to an ending for the issue that I think most people saw coming, even if it’s not what a lot of fans will want to hear.

    WICKED RATING: 7 Stars (7 / 10)
    Last edited by BAF; 17-05-16, 09:50 PM.

  • #2
    I wouldn't praise the issue as highly as this review does, mainly because I have some major reservations about the way Buffy is being written. She can be unreasonable, sure, but all the time? With everyone? Not so much.

    As regards the evilling up of Jonathan, you have to remember that this Jonathan is a version of him from before he had his revelation in CWDP. It's the Jonathan who opted in to Warren's plan to become a supervillain. He hasn't had all the experiences that turned the real Jonathan from that path, so it's no wonder he's not the same.

    Agree about the Lilah cameo, it's very well written.

    As for what the reviewer hints at happening at the end, which is the Buffy/Spike break-up, yes we all saw it coming (well, I know I did, and long before it was even hinted at in the story) but I still for the life of me can't work out what their disagreement is about, and would argue that it wouldn't be happening at all were Buffy not acting so unreasonably - and that comes back to my reservations about how Buffy is being written again. She's just flying off the handle with everyone. All the time. That's just not like her. Not since When She Was Bad in season 2 anyway, and she had the excuse of being only 16 then.


    • #3
      A very mid-arc issue pushing the story along mostly as expected. The continuation with Dawn/Xander and the initial reactions post D'Hoffryn's attack last issue work fine. I like Lilah's inclusion, her voicing is good, but I'm not sure still about W&H becoming a big BtVS factor, and with the inclusion of the Circle of the Black Thorn in this issue too it does feel very deliberately to be laying groundwork for it potentially becoming so. But I can see it adding to the overall coherency of the verse in S11 if dealing with W&H becomes part of both titles (assuming we have the two again) and I do think that could work well.

      I didn't like the Jonathan reveal much as his arc over the course of the show was a real series highlight for me and I don't think the voicing was great either. I have a huge fondness for the character and this doesn't move on from the show coherently I don't think. But, as I'll explain, I also don't think it has to for what they are doing. It is just that, because his story is a fave, it means I'm just not too keen on it all as it currently stands here. Also, the art for him is all wrong as he looks so buff with his manly hairy arms, ha. Or was it a different body he ended up in? I can't remember clearly back right now to when he got the bod he is in, but he doesn't look like Jonathan, so I'm unsure. Anyway, the reason I don't think it matters how out of character his choices seem, that they appear to be such a step backwards, is that his uploaded personality could have been from very early in the Trio's time together when he had a different attitude and focus, different wishes for himself etc and certainly is missing a whole heap of points of character development he later got to. The 'him' of whatever that stage may be, could also have been significantly affected by finding out about his own fate despite having tried to do the right thing in the end and, as they show, by Andrew's recent reluctance to 'fix' him above all. Aaaand, at the end of the day, this isn't a reincarnation of the living breathing person and so changes can be swept to one side somewhat.

      So mostly overall the issue covered what was expected. Buffy is vicious with everyone and is lashing out wildly and deliberately, often seeming to very intentionally look to hurt. I can't settle on whether it is really fully understandable or a little out of character for it to be so consistent and so widely occurring. She barely comes down from her high anger/accusatory mode at all and when she does she is excessively quick to flare again. The seed was sown for a death amongst the group by D'Hoffryn's comments to Jonathan, but it is impossible yet to know if it is just a tension tease or foreshadowing. It could just be related to Xander's and Dawn's absence and the effect that is having. I'm taking the anxiety over the situation with them to be what is ratcheting it all up to the nth degree for Buffy, and, to a lesser extent, for the others too.

      But the end result here is the totally-expected unravelling as she pushes everyone away. The too-predictable break for her and Spike seems very much on the cards and in keeping with the cover of the next issue, but who knows whether that will change again by the season end. I still would expect for the conclusion of the arc to be everyone somewhat pulling back together again, very much in a S4-esque way. Although with the theme of growing up I do expect some longer term ramifications and changes to the group dynamics as the fallout from this still. It could be just changes to her individual relationship(s) perhaps, most likely with either Spike or Willow going from the focus in this issue. There are still many potentials at this stage for where it is going to go by the end, so who knows.

      EDIT: Ha, I've just seen Morphia has already raised most of exactly the same points.
      Last edited by Stoney; 18-05-16, 11:05 AM.


      • #4
        Don't see that break sticking for any worthwhile length of time, if it even truly manifests. I mean, the issue ends mid-conversation, so let's actually see a scene end with them on such a break before we even take for granted it will happen. Prospect of losing waifu might be enough for Buffy to CTFO for a second.

        Two serious low-blow, shots-fired moments in the various Yoko Factor outgassings in the issue; Giles telling Buffy she refuses to grow up and Buffy (proving that deuce rolls downhill) playing the Angel card of all cards.

        Which, by the way, Foxtrot Uniform, Buffy, and Foxtrot Uniform you too Comic Book. The guy. was. Twilight. Watching these characters deal with post-Twilight Angel is like if you rewatch Season 3 of "Buffy", but... BUT... you pretend there was no curse/soul thing in Season 2 at all, and everything Angel did in Season 2 he just... y'know, did. But nothing in S3 is different, all the rationalizations the same. Having Buffy refer to Angel as just somebody who gets stuff done, a more reliable or consistent hero than Spike, is just stupid as hell. No defending it, barely even as something to say in anger.

        The arguing all works well for me here because nobody's really wrong. Buffy isn't wrong. It's true, every time she tried to put her foot down or basically "do Buffy" the way she always did, take control of their circumstances, decide action this season... there's Willow, there's Giles, crapping on it. But they are not wrong that her ground state this season was inaction and avoidance-avoidance -- a more actualized Slayer wouldn't have been so easily cowed by their lectures in the first place.

        I gotta give kudos to Spike's characterization -- I initially wanted to roll my eyes and declare fanservice over him being the go-to voice of reason, but then I remembered that is actually consistent. Spike has usually been one who has been able to be about the task at hand in a very practical way. One of my favorite Spike moments is actually from "Spiral". Just two words -- "the car!" When everything went down the drain, Spike was on point and on mission with total clarity, if we're going to save Dawn we obviously have got to get moving. And of course in "The Weight of the World" he was more of the same. It actually dovetails well with him having intuited in S4 how to "break" the Scoobies that he is also a competent hand at marshaling them when he must.

        I don't really think much of the Jonathan development. Partly because I also take a pee on the metaphysics of it, I just can't accept that's actually Jonathan any more than a Dollhouse imprint. I don't think they made their case convincingly enough with the "back up", magic or no. If it's actually Jonathan, it's OOC as hell, if it isn't, it matters less.

        Hey, funny they mentioned how using the vengeance demon wish power is a powerful tool for reshaping reality. I wonder if it might matter that the gang has a potential ally with that ability? o.O

        Lilah's appearance was fascinating to me only insofar as I'm curious what the firm's agenda is here. I guess restoring access to Earth is the main thing? Hard to figure. I am proud of Xander and Dawn for not taking her help, even if she apparently wanted to goad them into what they did.
        Banner by LRae12


        • #5
          So I got behind a few issues. Have caught up. Though the fact that I skimmed a bunch of issues in the middle means I don't track everything that's going on.

          Anyway, this kind of makes me want to go back and read the story, just to see if they really did build up Buffy's break down here -- and that's basically what we're seeing. She's failed, she knows it, she's lashing out. A good writer could do something with all of that. Not sure Christos is that guy, but anyway -- it was all pretty interesting.

          I like that Spike was the one to call the time out. I like that he didn't sit for the succession of low blows Buffy aimed his way. If this just is a time out, their relationship will be on better footing. More even, because Spike's not just at her beck and call any more. I'm fairly sure from the skimming (that mostly focused on the Spike parts) that the relationship issues have not been well-developed. That is to say, it's hard to be fussed about a break up (temporary or permanent) when the relationship itself has been so dull. But who knows, maybe that'll read better too if I ever get around to re-reading it -- especially paying more attention to the Buffy of it, which well, duh.

          Re: the remark about Angel. Since that was obviously just meant as The Low Blow, I don't know that one should read too much into it about what Buffy thinks of the guy. On the other hand, the reunion issue pretty much says King is right on this. So never mind.

          Anyway, I won't mind reading the next issue. Maybe I'll even remember to look for it when it comes out.
          "I don't want to be this good-looking and athletic. We all have crosses to bear." Banner Credit: Vampmogs


          • #6
            I liked this issue well enough. I don't really care for the relationship drama. I think D'Hoffryn had a pretty good point when he stole the book when he said that none of the scoobies are mature enough, and that they are all too caught up in their own personal drama to notice what's going on right under their nose. I find it kinda hard to root for any of these characters any-more. Buffy acted like a child this issue, I think Spike is right that they need a break if she's going to treat him like that. The highlight of the issue for me is Xander and Dawn trying to find their way home, as well as the Lilah cameo. I'm glad it was established that Dawn doesn't have god-key powers in all dimensions. I think it's stupid she had those powers to begin with.


            • #7
              Originally posted by Vampire in Rug View Post
              I liked this issue well enough. I don't really care for the relationship drama. I think D'Hoffryn had a pretty good point when he stole the book when he said that none of the scoobies are mature enough, and that they are all too caught up in their own personal drama to notice what's going on right under their nose. I find it kinda hard to root for any of these characters any-more. Buffy acted like a child this issue, I think Spike is right that they need a break if she's going to treat him like that.
              I find myself agreeing with you. Spike's reaction was actually one of the few mature moves in this issue. He's come a far distance from telling Buffy to put it all on him and then letting her beat him to a pulp. Buffy lashing out like this was a verbal repeat of "Dead Things", but at least Spike didn't take it laying down any more. Good on him.

              Hard to think this is the same Buffy he once told she was a hell of a woman...
              Smile, listen, agree - and then do whatever the f**k you wanted to do anyway... (Robert Downey jr.)


              • #8
                I got my copy of Buffy # 27,"Own It Part II" over the weekend.

                I thought this was strong issue across the board..DOn't really have much to add that others haven't said.

                I thought the Xander and Dawn stuff was great and enjoyed seeing Lilah again.I do wonder if we are going to see the retrun of Wolfram and Hart as a force for season 11.

                The stuff with Buffy and the rest of the Scoobies was very strong.Thought Giles being called on running away from his problems was a interesting highlight.

                And Buffy's lashing out is still in character IMO.As for the Buffy/Spike breakup.Putting my own shipper wants and preference.aside,I don't really have a opinion yet until I see next issue and how the season ends.

                One other thing I will mention.Andrew is a character I never cared for.He's had his moments this season but I'm still not a fan.With that said,I really felt bad for him as he took Jonathan's emotional onslaught.The fact the creative team managed to make me care about a character I don't like says something and is impressive IMO.

                Great issue overall.



                Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 10 #27

                by Greg McElhatton, Reviewer

                In "Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 10" #27, two plot threads move the issue, and one of them seems awfully familiar; that's the one set on Earth, as Buffy, Willow, Giles, Spike and Andrew learn the hard way that D'Hoffryn was this series' main villain all along, which causes them to crumble and split apart under the stress. While Christos Gage and Rebekah Isaacs do a good job with this part of the comic, it's in many ways a by-the-numbers sequence we've seen before in both the television show and in the comics. That said, the storyline that follows Xander and Dawn as they're trapped in the remote dimension of Anharra is storytelling gold.

                There's something ridiculously fun about seeing this issue pick up where the previous one left off, with Xander teaching the demons how a peaked roof can keep the acidic rain from destroying a home and promising the wonders of indoor plumbing. As Xander and Dawn introduce the demons to all sorts of comforts from Earth while dealing with a familiar representative of Wolfram and Hart, the charm just oozes off of the page. It works in part because we see the two succeed in a very strange environment, but also because the relationship between Xander and Dawn feels much more natural and real this time around. Regardless of whether the two become romantically involved or not, the bond between this pair is hard to deny.

                Conversely, the bonds between the rest of the cast all wear down as accusations are thrown left and right, even as D'Hoffryn weaves his master plan. It's well played on the demon's part, and we get to see just how well Gage has seeded this moment. It's a tiny bit frustrating to see some of that impact muted by the old standard of mistrust coming between the gang, and everyone pulls apart even as they confront hard truths about themselves. It's not bad by any stretch of the imagination and Gage may still take it somewhere different, but it's extremely old hat at the moment.

                Isaacs continues deliver good-looking pages with a consistency most would envy. There are lots of little emotional moments that come to life thanks to the way Isaacs draws them: Andrew's look of numbness when he sees what others have said behind his back, Giles' look of surprise when he's called out on why he's spending so much time in the Faerie Realm, the way Buffy comes across as both sad and exhausted at the end of the issue. As well as Isaacs handles action in comics -- and I've got no complaints about that -- she's at her best when she's conveying the feelings of the characters in "Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 10" #27.

                "Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 10" #27 moves the title through its final story arc, and it's on track for a strong finish so far. It's a little unfortunate that part of this feels a little too familiar, but -- then again -- Gage has certainly psyched out the readers before. Regardless, this comic is still fun and well above average. Gage and Isaacs' work in the Buffy universe has been quite excellent, and I'm sad to see this season coming to an end, even as I'm intrigued to see what happens next.
                Last edited by BAF; 23-05-16, 08:22 PM.


                • #9
                  I'm trying to remember, was the fairy girl that D'Hoffryn killed Giles's new girlfriend or was she another fairy?


                  • #10
                    No, I think the small one telling Giles they can't get involved for political reasons is his girlfriend.

                    - - - Updated - - -

                    Yep, just checked, she is the green haired one in this issue and is also the one sat with him at the beginning of #24 trying to argue for a portal to the Fae world.